|Gertrude in Delft -- not so fat after all|
In this, Gertrude is sort of like the village idiot in all the jokes. To other saints, stigmata are blessings, but they were often hidden to prevent unwanted attention. Gertrude naively revealed hers, and when the attention became too much, she prayed for healing. So who's the imbecile: the person who loses the blessing of five open wounds or the person who treasures them secretly? Yeah, that walks the line of sacrelige (or maybe jumps right over it) but then again, Jesus wasn't too keen to suffer all that abuse. He said something about passing the cup, right?
|St. John de Ribera -- looks like a nice guy|
John's first plan for dealing with them was rejected by King Philip III as too extreme. He recommended seizing all the property of the Moriscos and sending them to slavery in the galleys, mines, and colonies. He also recommended taking all children under 13 from them to be given to other families and raised properly Christian "for the good of their souls." King Phil liked the idea of seizing property, but the slavery and kidnapping seemed excessive. The good Archbishop had a back-up plan -- seize their property, kick them out of the country, and offer refuge to any kid under 13 who wants to stay. Phil agreed; no kids took these guys up on their offer. In 1609, the Moriscos, whom Archbishop John called "the sponges which sucked up all the wealth of the Christians," were expelled from Spain.
As noted in the title, it is also the feast of the Theophany, the shining manifestation of Jesus as the Christ. Three events are celebrated together on this day, though the Western tradition focuses on the Adoration of the Magi, since it makes a nice bracket for the Twelve Days of Christmas. The other two were the Baptism of Jesus by John and the Wedding at Cana. If you feel like you were suckered in by the heading, you can find the stories by following the links here.
Adoration of the Magi
Baptism of Jesus
Wedding at Cana